In learning and in life, collaboration is often central to achieving the results we seek. When we reflect on our most satisfying and successful learning experiences, they frequently involve collaborations among and between students, professors, or people who support our learning or who have provided us with opportunities to learn by working on projects with them. The 2013 University of Calgary Teaching & Learning Centre conference, Collaborating for Learning, will focus on the many ways faculty, students and disciplines collaborate to produce the meaningful learning we strive to foster in our students.
The “collaborations” can take many forms. Plank (2011) speaks of how team teaching can create a learning environment where it is safe for students to confront intimidating subjects or challenging topics. She sees it as a way to move “beyond the familiar and predictable and create an environment of uncertainty, dialogue and discovery. And that is what learning is all about.” More broadly, Handelsman and colleagues (2007) observe that “biological educators … place high value on the collaborative nature of active learning strategies because they believe it plays a significant role in fostering the “spirit of science” among the students.” Perhaps at the heart of understanding why collaboration can have such a strong impact on learning across disciplines lies in a fundamental shift in helping students develop not only as critical consumers of knowledge, but also in becoming producers of knowledge though authentic inquiry and problem solving (Healy & Jenkins, 2009). In this more complex learning task, diverse forms of collaboration enrich the deep learning experiences that prepare students to participate fully in work and in life.
Collaborating for Learning will focus on the many ways faculty, students and disciplines collaborate to produce the meaningful learning we strive to foster in our students. The conference will live up to its name, and provide opportunity for learning together in ways that allow us to enhance our practice, grow our research on how students learn, and build our community. It is a collaborative event where faculty, graduate students, post doctoral students, librarians, student services professionals and students are invited to discuss their insights, experiences and related research. Some of the themes for consideration include collaboration inside the classroom, outside the classroom, collaboration among the disciplines and collaboration in inquiry.
Held at the University of Calgary, May 15-16, 2013.
- Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning
- Taylor Institute for Teaching and Learning Educational Development Unit
- 23 2013